Majestic Decay of a Mortal God in Béla Tarr’s “Werckmeister Harmonies”

Valuska, a dreamy, and intellectually “slow” postman, with a poetic understanding of his surroundings, stages a little scene with a bunch of weary drunkards, in a bar, at the very beginning of the film. He arranges the drunkards to act the roles of the the Moon and the Earth, as they revolve around the Sun. … Continue reading Majestic Decay of a Mortal God in Béla Tarr’s “Werckmeister Harmonies”

Reunions on Christmas Eve in Satoshi Kon’s “Tokyo Godfathers”

Satoshi Kon's wonderful anime depicts the Christmas Eve of three homeless bums (self-proclaimed) who listen to a public sermon and watch a play celebrating the birth of Christ, so they can eat afterwards. One of them, Gin, says: “Joy to the world, food has come”. Soon, they find a baby in the trash, and the … Continue reading Reunions on Christmas Eve in Satoshi Kon’s “Tokyo Godfathers”

5 Japanese Movies Filmed in the Spirit of Junichirō Tanizaki’s Beautiful Essay “In Praise of Shadows”

In a 1951 letter to his editor, while explaining his Silmarillion, J.R.R. Tolkien writes: “As far as all this has symbolical or allegorical significance, Light is such a primeval symbol in the nature of the Universe, that it can hardly be analysed. The Light of Valinor (derived from light before any fall) is the light … Continue reading 5 Japanese Movies Filmed in the Spirit of Junichirō Tanizaki’s Beautiful Essay “In Praise of Shadows”

Silence (Martin Scorsese, 2016) “The Dark Night of the Soul”

Earlier this year, I wrote an article about this very film, “Last Breaths of Christendom in the Land of the Rising Son”, emphasizing the role of the Japanese state (Tokugawa Shogunate) and the Hobbesian reading which implies that the state proscribes the teachings and religions practiced by the populace; in this case the state religion … Continue reading Silence (Martin Scorsese, 2016) “The Dark Night of the Soul”

Freedom or Security? – MCU’s “Captain America: The Winter Soldier”

Chris Evans, the actor who impersonated Captain America, said the following words regarding his character's transition from the WWII era to the modern day: “It's not so much about his shock with [technology]... It's more about the societal differences. He's gone from the '40s to today; he comes from a world where people were a … Continue reading Freedom or Security? – MCU’s “Captain America: The Winter Soldier”

The Advent of “Joker” – A Pathological Struggle for Recognition

Editor’s Note: Since the film is in the cinemas at the moment while I am writing this article, I will not reveal any details about the film's plot, and I will certainly not write a value judgment of the film. Whether the film is enjoyable or not in the final verdict is a matter of … Continue reading The Advent of “Joker” – A Pathological Struggle for Recognition

Dionysiac Union with Art in Aronofsky’s “Black Swan”

Aronofsky’s Black Swan follows the ballet dancer Nina, who gets a part in the production of Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake. She is fragile, innocent, fearful and pure, but lacks the feel for playing the Black Swan, while she is a perfect cast for the White Swan. In the performances of Tchaikovsky’s ballet, the same ballerina sometimes … Continue reading Dionysiac Union with Art in Aronofsky’s “Black Swan”